Local News

Mar 19, 2014 1:57 PM by Janine Reyes

Coastal Bend Welcomes Dozens of New U.S. Citizens

CORPUS CHRISTI -- The Coastal Bend now has 68 new American citizens that call our community home.

A naturalization ceremony brought people from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe to the Federal Courthouse for the official ceremony this morning.

After singing the national anthem and the holding the American flag in hand, all 68 people became American citizens.

"Yes! I'm American," Martha Patricia Martinez exclaimed after receiving her certificate of citizenship. She was born in Mexico City, but for the last 14 years, she's called Corpus Christi home.

"I love Corpus Christi, the beach is wonderful and in the morning when you come to work, to see the sky, its gorgeous," Martinez told us. She works at Christus Spohn as a Certified Nursing Assistant.

Diala Abuoali walked into today's ceremony a citizen of Lebanon and left as an American Citizen. "Its a very good thing, I like to be a citizen, American citizen," she said. She's spent three years in the Coastal Bend. Her son and husband are citizens and her unborn daughter will be one too.

She says she took this step for family. "For my son, he's going to learn and go to university here, its very very good," Abuoali said. In fact, she got her G.E.D. here and she plans to attend college.

Both women thank their family for support. "It's a big emotion, it's a big emotion, I was waiting for this moment for a long time and now I'm here, it's like oh my God, thanks, God," Martinez said.

They say now, the sky is the limit. "The United States is a place where dreams come true," Martinez said.

The new citizens come from several countries all over the world. The majority are from Mexico.

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